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Tschabalala Self: By My Self

From February 28, 2021 — September 19, 2021

5e2751614de98 Tschabalala Self: By My Self 2021_tschabalala-self-by-my-self /images/exhibitions/large/TS1_o4.jpg /images/exhibitions/large/TS1_o4.jpg Image: Tschabalala Self. Two Women. 2019. Rubell Museum. © Tschabalala Self. 1 2021-02-28T00:00:00-05:00 2021-09-19T00:00:00-05:00

Known for constructing grandly scaled Black figures in collage-like canvases made of found fabrics and fragments of her own recycled artworks, Tschabalala Self has emerged over the past five years as one of the most significant artists working to reinvent figurative painting.

For her upcoming BMA exhibition, the New Haven-based artist turns her attention to Henri Matisse’s Two Women (1907–08), the only sculpture by Matisse to combine two figures. Self was drawn to the work because of its original title, Two Negresses. In response to the sculpture, the artist has produced a suite of three monumental new paintings portraying a female couple in shifting orientations.

Self’s suite of new paintings, accompanied by a dozen of the artist’s most significant paintings from recent years and a selection of related sculpture, examine ideas of loneliness and connection in depictions of couples and individuals. Couples appear isolated, as well as intimate, in their togetherness, while solitary figures suggest companionship, even camaraderie, with their own many parts. Self builds these figures by combining components she has recycled, replicated, or transferred using devices such as stencils, tracings, frottage or rubbings of an uneven surface, intaglio or engraving, and machine-stitched lines of thread.

The artist’s process of imagining and assembling her characters, piece by piece, is inseparable from her belief in people as multi-dimensional beings who are never finished becoming themselves.

This exhibition is generously sponsored by The Hardiman Family Endowment Fund and Steve Pulimood.

The 2020 Vision installation of the Contemporary Wing is generously sponsored by BGE, Constellation and Exelon.

Tschabalala Self: By My Self is curated by Cecilia Wichmann, BMA Associate Curator, Contemporary Art.

Known for constructing grandly scaled Black figures in collage-like canvases made of found fabrics and fragments of her own recycled artworks, Tschabalala Self has emerged over the past five years as one of the most significant artists working to reinvent figurative painting.

For her upcoming BMA exhibition, the New Haven-based artist turns her attention to Henri Matisse’s Two Women (1907–08), the only sculpture by Matisse to combine two figures. Self was drawn to the work because of its original title, Two Negresses. In response to the sculpture, the artist has produced a suite of three monumental new paintings portraying a female couple in shifting orientations.

This exhibition is generously sponsored by The Hardiman Family Endowment Fund and Steve Pulimood.

The 2020 Vision installation of the Contemporary Wing is generously sponsored by BGE, Constellation and Exelon.

Tschabalala Self: By My Self is curated by Cecilia Wichmann, BMA Associate Curator, Contemporary Art.

Image: Tschabalala Self. Two Women. 2019. Rubell Museum. © Tschabalala Self.